All getting a bit too much

Hi,

I have suffered with anxiety and panic attacks for many, many years. At one point I walked out on my job, cut myself off from all of my friends and basically closed myself off to living.

After about 5 years of this, and after being in hospital for an unrelated issue, I started to feel slightly better and this is when I met my now wife. In the next few years I was able to get a new job and have a new life and at times have started to feel that I could cope, in some way, with the anxiety.

But in the past year or so it has increasingly become more and more difficult. At times I am constantly having panic attacks and then subsequently feel that everything is too much to handle. At the moment I have to find a new job, find a new place to live whilst my wife finishes her PhD and I am struggling. Yesterday I had to meet with the director of the place where I work to discuss restructuring and I had a massive panic attack and it was all I could do not to run out of the office. I was sweating, unable to look up, just concentrating on writing down what she was saying in some kind of attempt to seem 'normal'. This was in no way unusual and happens very often at times, with varying degrees of severity.

Last year I had counselling as well as ten or so sessions with a clinical hypnotherapist. Although of some help, the counselling was limited to six sessions and the hypnotherapist felt that she could not help me any further but to get back into contact if I wanted to.

I am now considering CBT and perhaps medication. My GP prescribed me Propanolol but this has not been very successful. Does anyone have any advice or feel like sharing any experiences?

3 Replies

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  • I am on a low dose of propanalol have in 10mg tablets and take it throughout the day. I fine it really helpful but i am on other medication too for anxiety/depression and diazapam if needed. Found cbt good. Have to put in the effort though. Cbt for dummies is supposed to be good and a smaller one which is in a journal form. I find relaxation good and massage. Good luck. X

  • Hi

    I do understand your predicament, as I've had the same issues at work etc.

    Sounds like your becoming re-sensitised to the panics, so some CBT would help, personally I think meds are a quick supposed cure, but they dont cure they suppress, thats my take on it, but can be used untill you have the below in place.

    So, you need to understand whats going on in a panic

    Learn how to face the panic, and other nervous symptoms

    And get a coping strategy together, to deal with it.

    For me I like Dr. Claire Weekes self help treatment, and a bit of mindfullness I think they call it now. I call it meditation :-) because thats what it is.

    Unfortunately Dr Claires Best in my opinion book is out of print, but I do have my trusty sopy here if you need any tips from it.

    My shared experience, would be I struggled through work on valium till I got sacked, due to being exhausted, ended up giving up, as there wasn't much help in those days, and I didnt know what was going on really.

    Then I tried to find answer myself. I did eventually with a mix of the above and EMDR, which I thought was very good at dealing with past issues.

    Hope you can find the right help

    Wishing you well

    B

    xxx

  • I have shared your experiences and still do to some extent. Fortunately I was able to give up work a while ago and was fine for a long time, then the symptoms recurred. I find that exercise helps (walking mainly), meditation is great (especially breathing meditation and the related discipline of mindfulness) as is having someone sympathetic to discuss things with (I belong to a couple of groups). Medications can be useful but can also create additional problems. CBT didn't work for me. Screen out stress as much as possible, avoid demanding people, if avoidance is impossible then disclose the problem to explain your behaviour. Re-evaluate your life and the way you live. Have a bolt-hole in mind (a retreat centre possibly in a quiet supportive environment with structured activities that you can opt in and out of easily). Have some fun - laughter really is the best medicine! And good luck

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